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Showing posts from July, 2005

Decoding The Da Vinci Code (Part 1)

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Someone wrote, “My heart cannot rejoice in what my mind rejects.”

So can’t I. For our Lord Jesus commanded us: Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.” (Matthew 22:37, NIV) That’s why we Christians must know not only what we believe but also why we believe. Sincerity is not enough. We could be sincerely wrong. We need to be sincerely right. Our faith is not blind but intelligent. Paul wrote, “I am not ashamed, because I know whom I have believed” (2 Timothy 1:12).

Last Thursday, I gave a talk to our Young Pro Fellowship on the bestselling suspense thriller, The Da Vinci Code. TIME magazine hailed it as “The Novel That Ate the World.” More than 25 million copies are already sold worldwide. The novel is also translated in 44 languages. It topped bestseller’s lists such as the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and Publishers’ Weekly. A movie version is in the making with Tom Hanks taking the lead. TIME also recently named author Dan Brow…

Not Getting Any Younger

Last Sunday, I celebrated my 36th birthday. Yes, I am “only” 36 years old. Whether I’m still young or already old depends upon your point of view. But what I saw in the “40 Million Minutes” video (http://www.sermonvideos.com) made me pray the prayer of Moses: “Teach us to number our days aright, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.” (Psalm 90:12, NIV)

An average person lives 77 years. That’s 40,000,000 minutes. Exactly what the Bible said. “We can expect seventy years, or maybe eighty, if we are healthy, but even our best years bring trouble and sorrow. Suddenly our time is up, and we disappear.” (v. 10, Contemporary English Version.) That also places me in the category of mid-lifers. :-(

Now you do the math…

On the average we spend 40 minutes every day on the phone. That’s a total of 2 years in a lifetime. I think it could be more. Have you noticed that to most of us the first thing we usually touch in the morning is our cell phone?

We spend a total of 1½ hours each day getting ready for…

Being Faithful In So Little

One very stormy night an elderly couple entered the lobby of a small hotel. They asked for a room. But there was none for them. But the clerk took pity on them. He said, “I can’t send a fine couple like you out in the rain. Would you be willing to sleep in my room?” The couple hesitated but the clerk insisted.

The next morning, the man said to the clerk, “You’re the kind of man who should be managing the best hotel in the United States. Someday I’ll build you one.” The clerk just smiled politely.

A few years later the clerk got a letter from the elderly man. A round-trip ticket was enclosed. He asked the clerk to come to New York. When the clerk arrived, the elderly man brought him to a magnificent new building. Then he said to the clerk, “That is the hotel I have built for you to manage.” The elderly man was William Waldorf Astor, and the hotel was the original Waldorf-Astoria. The young clerk was George C. Boldt, the first manager of the hotel.[1]

Our Lord Jesus once said, “Anyone who …

Ignorance or Apathy?

A reporter interviewed a man on the street. “Which do you think is the biggest problem in our nation today: ignorance or apathy?” The man answered, “I don’t know and I don’t care!”

As Christians, we cannot afford not to know. We cannot afford not to care. One of my favorite Bible teachers, Dr. John MacArthur, wrote, “I believe that we need to take every legal means available to us as citizens to effect change in country. Every time you have an opportunity to do that—you need to do that.” That is not a violation of the separation of church and state. It is the responsibility of the state to ensure freedom of religion. It is the responsibility of the church to serve as the conscience of the state. MacArthur added: “If there is a forum where you can say what needs to be said, then you need to say that. If there is a letter that you can write, then you need to write that letter. If there is a vote that you can make, then you need to make that vote.”

Personally, let me emphasize my convict…

PRO-Government

“Hello, Garci?”

That controversial wiretapped chat on cheating in the last election between President GMA and COMELEC Commissioner Garcillano stirred up loud protests demanding her resignation. Peso-dollar exchange remained volatile. Prices of almost everything went up. It seems we are polarized as a nation.

As Christians, we cannot help but be involved. Yes, we are heavenly-minded. But we should have earthly good. What do we do in the midst of this brewing storm?

We should become PRO-Government. Now, before you react, allow me to explain. One of the three institutions that God ordained is the government. (The other two are the church and the family.) “Only God can give authority to anyone, and he puts these rulers in their places of power. People who oppose the authorities are opposing what God has done, and they will be punished.” (Romans 13:1-2, Contemporary English Version) How we relate to the government reflects on our relationship with God.

So, first we must PRAY for the government…

Pay It Forward

Remember the movie Pay it Forward?

It’s about Trevor McKinney, an eleven-year-old boy who shared this brilliant idea: When we benefit from someone else’s good deed, instead of paying the person back, we have to “pay it forward.” Now we have something to pay forward. We ourselves would not have heard the Good News if people then were not sent to share it to us. That’s why every believer should be involved with missions.

First, we can pray. The Lord Jesus said, “Pray to the Lord of the harvest that He will send out laborers into His harvest.” (Matthew 9:38, Modern King James Version) Be informed by reading about mission work in Christian magazines or newsletters from Christian organizations or over the internet. Through that, we would know what to pray for.

Second, we can go. Consider joining in a short-term mission trip. My wife Ellen went with a group of women to Indo-China late last year. It was a very memorable experience for the team. They visited a tribe displaced by ethnic cleansing…